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Bridgerland Technical College was recently ranked second among licensed practical nursing programs in the Western U.S. by NursingProcess.org, an industry site focused on guiding prospective nursing students to the right school.

“It was great to be listed as number 2 in the Western United States, that was pretty awesome,” Practical Nursing Director Yvonne Manning said.

BTECH beat out Ogden-Weber Technical College, who came in third, and Utah State University, who came in eighth. The number one spot went to Chemeketa Community College in Salem, Oregon.

The site heavily weighted exam pass rates alongside three other factors: academic quality, school reputation and affordability. BTECH’s site boasts a 100 percent program pass rate for the licensing exam.

“To be able to have that so close to 100 percent over the last 20 years, I mean it’s like 99.9 percent … and over the last five years it has been 100 percent pass rate,” Manning said.

She credits the ranking to more than just strong exam performance, though.

“We also have lower tuition for a practical nursing program, which is really nice to have,” Manning said. “And just overall a good reputation in the community — our students are known for being great nurses.”

The 1500-hour course can lead to a career in its own right but often serves as the first step toward a registered nursing license. BTECH doesn’t run its own RN program but does partner with Weber State University to provide that next step.

“Our students who complete the LPN program here are then able to go on directly to Weber through an LPN to RN bridge and they are able to take those classes here at Bridgerland,” Manning said. “And so after a year with us, then a year with Weber, they can have their registered nurse.”

Manning said the program’s success was also due to the department’s skilled educators.

“I have exceptional faculty who really put in the effort to make sure students understand, not just memorizing facts, but they actually understand the nursing process,” she said.

NursingProcess.org lists nine national rankings, 12 regional rankings and two dozen specialization rankings as well as specific rankings for different degrees and certifications in each state. The site has no national ranking for LPN programs.

The site describes itself as “Your guide to nursing and healthcare education.” In addition to program rankings, it includes salary information for different career paths and locations.

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